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(Saturday, September 19th)
Final Score: Florida State 54, (7) BYU 28
Provo, UT (Sports Network) - Ty Jones highlighted Florida State's dominating running game with 108 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries, as the Seminoles surprised No. 7 BYU, 54-28, ending the Cougars' 18-game home winning streak in impressive fashion.
Christian Ponder did it with his arm and his legs, passing for two TDs and running for another for FSU (2-1), which came in as a significant underdog after a loss to Miami-Florida in its season opener and a mere 10-point win over FCS foe Jacksonville State last weekend.
Ponder finished with 195 yards on 21-of-26 throws, also adding 77 yards on the ground, while Lonnie Pryor rushed for two scores for the Seminoles, who outgained the Cougars, 313-108, on the ground.
All-American candidate Max Hall was intercepted three times during a 20- for-31 effort through the air, ending with 306 yards and two touchdowns for BYU (2-1), which was sporting its highest ranking since 1996 following an upset win over Oklahoma and a rout of Tulane to start its season.
Harvey Unga had 97 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries in the crushing defeat.
Florida State had its way offensively throughout the game, scoring a touchdown on each of its first four possessions. Jones got things started with a four- yard TD run five minutes in.
After a BYU fumble in enemy territory, the Seminoles held the ball for the next 8 1/2 minutes, with Pryor's one-yard TD run capping the 17-play, 86-yard drive early in the second quarter. Dustin Hopkins missed the extra point, keeping it a 13-0 game.
Each team exchanged quick-scoring drives the rest of the half. Unga's 12-yard jaunt got BYU on the board, and another TD run by Pryor followed shortly from nine yards away.
Hall hit Manase Tonga off a play-action fake for a three-yard score with five minutes left in the half, but the visitors came right back with another meticulous march, which was culminated in a five-yard scoring grab from Caz Piurowski with 24 seconds remaining in the half.
Jan Jorgensen fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and FSU recovered at the BYU 30 yard-line, setting up Hopkins' 33-yard field goal for a 30-14 lead at the break.
On the opening drive of the second half, Greg Reid stepped in front of a rare ill-advised pass from Hall and raced 63 yards the other way to extend the margin.
FSU converted on all seven of its third-down attempts in the opening 30 minutes and continued that trend following a quick punt from BYU in the third.
On 3rd-and-goal from the six, Ponder was forced to tuck the ball and run for the end zone, diving for the left pylon and barely crossing the goal line to make it 44-14.
Hall hooked up with McKay Jacobson for an 80-yard TD on the very next offensive play to pull within three scores, but that was as close as it got.
After Hopkins booted a 35-yard field goal five minutes into the final stanza, Hall was picked off again, and Ponder's 16-yard strike to Jarmon Fortson all but ended the game a little later.
Riley Nelson relieved Hall and found J.J. Di Luigi down the middle for 29-yard TD to account for the final margin, ending a brutal home opener for BYU.
FSU leads the all-time series, 3-0...BYU hosts Mountain West Conference foe Colorado State next weekend, while the Seminoles head back to Tallahassee for a contest with South Florida...The Seminoles had averaged just 94.0 rushing yards in their first two games this season...FSU made 12-of-15 third-down conversions...Each team punted just once.
09/20 00:23:36 ET